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Majority of U.S. Adults Feel Military Action in Iraq Was the Wrong Thing to Do, According to Latest Harris Poll

Majority of U.S. Adults Feel Military Action in Iraq Was the Wrong Thing to Do, According to Latest Harris Poll

ROCHESTER, N.Y., Oct. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- A new Harris Poll finds almost no change in the American public's generally gloomy opinions about Iraq. President Bush's negative rating now stands at 66 percent for his handling of events there, the lowest of his presidency. For the first time, a majority (53%) of adults feel that military action in Iraq was the wrong thing to do.

These are some of the results of a Harris Interactive(R) poll of 1,833 U.S. adults surveyed online between October 11 and 17, 2005 just before the Iraqis voted to ratify their new constitution.

Other interesting findings from the poll include: -- President Bush's ratings on Iraq are now 66 percent negative, 32 percent positive, slightly worse than his ratings in September (65% negative, 34% positive) and July (64% negative, 34% positive). -- A 61 to 24 percent majority is not confident that U.S. policies in Iraq will be successful, again slightly lower than the numbers in September (59% and 23%, respectively). -- A 53 to 34 percent majority believes that taking military action against Iraq was the wrong thing to do. This is the first time that a majority feels this and is a complete reversal from two years ago when a 55 to 32 percent majority believed that taking military action was the right thing to do. -- Only 19 percent of all adults feel that the situation for U.S. troops in Iraq is getting better, while 44 percent think it is getting worse; 33 percent see no change and four percent are not sure. These numbers are unchanged from September. -- Equal percentages feel that things in Iraq are moving in the right direction (38%) and that things are moving in the wrong direction (38%), but fully 24 percent are not sure.

This poll was conducted just as Iraqis were voting to ratify their new constitution. It remains to be seen whether this milestone will be perceived as a benefit to President Bush.

TABLE 1

RATING OF PRESIDENT BUSH -- HANDLING OF IRAQ

"Overall, how would you rate the job President Bush has done in handling the

issue of Iraq over the last several months?" Base: All Adults 2003 2004 Mar April May July Sept Nov Jan Mar April May Jun July Sept Dec % % % % % % % % % % % % % % Positive (NET) 56 67 63 49 47 41 51 49 43 42 41 39 41 42 Excellent 29 38 34 21 16 15 20 18 15 13 13 15 14 12 Pretty good 27 29 28 29 31 26 31 31 29 29 27 24 27 30 Negative (NET) 43 32 36 50 51 58 46 49 55 56 58 58 58 57 Only fair 16 15 18 22 19 19 20 19 18 18 19 17 17 19 Poor 27 17 18 28 32 38 26 30 37 39 39 40 41 37 Not sure 1 1 1 1 2 1 2 2 2 2 1 3 2 2 2005 Jan Mar May July Sept Oct % % % % % % Positive (NET) 39 42 37 34 34 32 Excellent 13 18 13 11 10 11 Pretty good 26 24 24 23 24 21 Negative (NET) 59 56 61 64 65 66 Only fair 17 20 19 20 18 16 Poor 42 36 42 44 46 50 Not sure 2 2 2 2 2 2 Note: Percentages may not add up exactly to 100% due to rounding. TABLE 2 CONFIDENT THAT U.S. POLICIES WILL BE SUCCESSFUL "How confident are you that U.S. policies in Iraq will be successful?" Base: All Adults 2003 2004 Sept Nov Jan Feb Mar April May June July Sept Dec % % % % % % % % % % % Confident 27 25 31 31 31 26 25 25 26 29 29 Not confident 46 51 45 48 46 52 55 53 51 54 51 Not sure 27 24 24 22 22 22 20 22 23 18 20 2005 Jan Mar May July Sept Oct % % % % % % Confident 25 30 26 23 23 24 Not confident 56 49 54 59 59 61 Not sure 19 21 20 19 18 15 Note: Percentages may not add up exactly to 100% due to rounding. TABLE 3 MILITARY ACTION - RIGHT OR WRONG THING TO DO "Thinking about everything that has happened, do you think that taking military action against Iraq was the right or wrong thing to do?" Base: All Adults 2003 2004 Sept Nov Jan Feb Mar April May June July Sept Dec % % % % % % % % % % % Right thing 55 49 55 52 51 49 47 44 43 43 43 Wrong thing 32 37 31 34 33 37 38 42 42 43 43 Not sure 13 13 15 14 16 14 14 14 15 13 14 2005 Jan Mar May July Sept Oct % % % % % % Right thing 39 41 39 38 37 34 Wrong thing 46 45 48 49 49 53 Not sure 15 15 13 14 14 13 Note: Percentages may not add up exactly to 100% due to rounding. TABLE 4 SITUATION FOR U.S. TROOPS - GETTING BETTER OR WORSE "Do you think that the situation for U.S. troops in Iraq is ... ?" Base: All Adults 2004 Jan Feb Mar April May June July Sept Dec % % % % % % % % % Getting better 24 22 24 9 11 19 18 15 18 Getting worse 36 38 38 64 65 49 45 54 50 No real change 31 31 30 20 19 26 30 26 25 Not sure 8 9 8 6 5 6 7 6 6 2005 Jan Mar May July Sept Oct % % % % % % Getting better 13 21 21 17 19 19 Getting worse 53 41 39 44 43 44 No real change 28 33 34 35 33 33 Not sure 6 6 6 4 5 4 Note: Percentages may not add up exactly to 100% due to rounding. TABLE 5 SITUATION IN IRAQ -- MOVING IN RIGHT OR WRONG DIRECTION "Do you think things in Iraq are moving in the right direction?" Base: All Adults 2005 May July Sept Oct % % % % Yes, things are moving in the right direction 39 37 38 38 No, things are moving in the wrong direction 29 36 33 38 Not sure 31 28 29 24 Note: Percentages may not add up exactly to 100% due to rounding. Methodology

The Harris Poll(R) was conducted online within the United States between October 11 and 17, 2005 among a nationwide cross section of 1,833 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.

In theory, with probability samples of this size, one could say with 95 percent certainty that the results have a sampling error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points of what they would be if the entire U.S. adult population had been polled with complete accuracy. Unfortunately, there are several other possible sources of error in all polls or surveys that are probably more serious than theoretical calculations of sampling error. They include refusals to be interviewed (nonresponse), question wording and question order, and weighting. It is impossible to quantify the errors that may result from these factors. This online sample was not a probability sample.

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

J25586 Q601, Q610, Q615, Q625, Q630 The Harris Poll(R) #79, October 25, 2005

By David Krane, VP of Harris Interactive Public Affairs and Government Research and an editor of The Harris Poll.

About Harris Interactive(R)

Harris Interactive Inc. (http://www.harrisinteractive.com/) is the 13th largest and fastest-growing market research firm in the world, perhaps best known for The Harris Poll(R) and for pioneering and engineering Internet-based research methods. The Rochester, New York-based global research company blends premier strategic consulting with innovative and efficient methods of investigation, analysis and application, conducting proprietary and public research globally to help clients achieve clear, material and enduring results.

Blending science and art, Harris Interactive combines its intellectual capital and one of the world's largest online panels of respondents, with premier Internet survey technology and sophisticated research methods to market leadership through its US, Europe (http://www.harrisinteractive.com/europe) and Asia offices, its wholly owned subsidiary, Novatris in Paris (http://www.novatris.com/), and through an independent global network of affiliate market research companies. EOE M/F/D/V

To become a member of the Harris Poll Online(SM) and be invited to participate in future online surveys, go to http://www.harrispollonline.com/.

Contacts: Nancy Wong Harris Interactive 585-214-7316 Kelly Gullo Harris Interactive 585-214-7172 Harris Interactive Inc. 10/05

Harris Interactive

CONTACT: Nancy Wong, +1-585-214-7316, or Kelly Gullo, +1-585-214-7172,
both of Harris Interactive

Web site: http://www.harrisinteractive.com/

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